PhD Scholarship Investigating real-time epidemiology of notified campylobacter infections in a single health trust site at the whole genome level



Nottingham Trent University is inviting applications for a fully funded PhD studentship, commencing in October 2013, in the following field:

Campylobacter is the major cause of bacterial gastroenteritis in the world today and in the UK is responsible for a significant health burden. Studying the epidemiology of this organism is vital in understanding which strains are pathogenic, the transmission of these strains and identifying sources of infection which can all contribute to a better ability to control this organism and reduce the disease burden. Previous studies have focussed mainly on molecular typing schemes, analysing just a small section of the genome whereas some of the larger-scale genome projects currently on going in the field are aimed at determining the source rather than trying to fully understand the epidemiology of human infections.

The proposed project strengthens the internationally recognised work of Dr Manning on Campylobacter, and also strengthens the internationally recognised microbial genomics work of Dr McNally and the strong links between Nottingham Trent University, The University of Nottingham and Queen’s Medical Centre.  The project itself aims to perform the first ever real-time epidemiological study of notified Campylobacter infections in a single health trust site at the whole genome level and will involve the genome sequencing of around 100 confirmed Campylobacter isolates from QMC per year, and the combination of the analysed data with anonymised patient information (UoN) to provide the most detailed picture to date of the epidemiology of seasonal Campylobacter infections.  Candidates with a background in Microbiology and some experience in bioinformatics will be considered, although full training in genome analysis will be provided.

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Entry requirement

The minimum qualification for entry is a first or upper Second Class Honours degree (or equivalent) or an MSc/MRes with merit or distinction in Biosciences or a related discipline.

Eligibility

Applications can be accepted from UK/EU and also International students. The minimum English language proficiency requirement for candidates who have not undertaken a higher degree at a UK HE institution is IELTS 6.5 (with no element to be below 6.0) or TOEFL 560/iBT 94-95.

Award
The studentship will pay UK/EU fees and provide a maintenance stipend linked to the RCUK rate (currently £13,726 per annum) for up to three years. Applications from non-EU students are welcome, but a successful candidate would be responsible for paying the difference between non-EU and UK/EU fees. (Fees for 2013/14 are £11,600 for non-EU students and £3,900 for UK/EU students and are likely to rise in subsequent years).

Applying

For informal enquiries about the studentship, please contact Dr Alan McNally – [email protected] or Dr Georgina Manning – [email protected]

For an application form, please click on the ‘Apply’ button below.

Please return your fully completed application form; copies of academic certificates obtained to date; and copies of English proficiency certificates (if applicable) via email to: [email protected]

Applications by CV only will not be accepted.

The closing date for receipt of completed application forms is 5 pm on Friday 23 August 2013.

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